chi-cheemaunThe Chi-Cheemaun Ferry re-bounds after low numbers traffic through peak season.

Sunday marked the end of the 2017 sailing season for the Chi-Cheemaun. Today she will make her way to Owen Sound from Tobermory with 500 passengers on board for the Annual Fall Colours Cruise. Expected arrival time in Owen Sound is 4:00pm.

Final 2017 traffic numbers fared better than expected given the unseasonably wet and cool summer weather. Chi-Cheemaun carried 2.02% more vehicles and 1.96% more passengers than in 2016. Operational reliability rates remained high in spite of 7 round-trip crossings lost to mechanical issues sporadically during the early part of the season. In each situation the problems and solutions were quickly identified and there were no major disruptions in service.

The 2017 sailing season was nothing less than "eventful" as Chi-Cheemaun hosted more musical and interpretation programming than in prior years. Continually focused on product development, OSTC was successful in bringing Chi-Cheemaun's passengers a wide variety of events: 4 Dinner Cruise & Concerts, a Craft Brews Cruise, weekly Sunset Dinner Cruises, weekly interpretation programs with Parks Canada, Falcon Migwans and Wikwemikong Tourism, the soft book launch of Mark Zelinski's photobook "Heart of Turtle Island", the Stargazer's Delight Tour, and "A Month of Sundays" musical workshop concerts which were part of the Celebrate Ontario programming and in partnership with GFBS and were offered every Sunday in July. In addition to our event series, OSTC's passengers were entertained by 9 different professional performers who provided impromptu concerts through the "Play for Passage" program. Finally, art exhibits by the Ojibwe Cultural Foundation and Tom Thomson Art Gallery were on display in the Aft Lounge throughout the season.

Interior renovations are scheduled for the Chi-Cheemaun once again while at its winter berth in the Owen Sound Harbour. This year renovations will be made to the Aft Lounge. This space, like the Dining Room and Fathom Five Lounge renovations, will be completely remodeled and modernized. Next season, this space will provide passengers with an updated children's "play and learn" area, art exhibit displays and a Parks Canada interpretation presentation area. This will be the 4th consecutive year in which updates have been made to vessel.

The 2018 sailing season is scheduled to begin Friday, May 4th and will provide daily crossings from Tobermory to South Baymouth from May through October.

source: media release, Owen Sound Transportation Company


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